Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Oh the Christmas Season...

Every year I make a Christmas List but over the years it has gotten harder and harder. A, because I'm growing up, and B, I've already got everything I need. Throughout the year I'm always like "oh that's cool, oh I want that" but then Christmas comes around and I don't even think about those things. I didn't really want it, it was just a passing fancy. This year my list was kind of weird. I did have a couple DVDs and books because they are really good and I've seen or read them a hundred times and still love them. But I also put down body washes, soap, clothes, and shoes. I haven't bought new clothes in a while and my family is saying its about time so yeah.

Makes me feel so grown up because I'm asking for things other than toys! Which I haven't done in a while...its usually this book that book, a dictionary, thesaurus, notebooks (which I refrained from asking for since I already have a dozen unused ones...but hey if I get them, I'll love it!) and pens...which I asked for. I use pens ore for school now so my supply is being slowly drained...and yet I have enough to last me a few years. But hey, someday I could be too poor to get a pen so yeah, stocking up.

I think the most unique thing I put on my list is card sets, like the kind you send to people. And stamps...yeah for letters. I love sending people cards and letters but I realized how expensive it is when it all adds up. So I thought I'd put it on my list so that others can help me help others. That make sense?

Anywho, what's on your list?

Merry Christmas y'all!

Love,
Jade Sparks

Friday, November 13, 2015

November Is Here!

        It is so crazy that November is here already! Thanksgiving is coming up fast so get ready y'all! It is a time to be thankful for everything God has given you, everything your parents have done for you, and every blessing that has come into your life.
       Thanksgiving is always a happy time for my family. My mom, sister, and I are in the kitchen making rolls, pies, veggies and turkey. My sister takes care of the table settings and my brother prepares the drinks. Sparkling Apple Cider is the favorite in the household around Thanksgiving as well the Eggnog.We have a big dinner, make our annul "Thankful Lists", and of course some football. We share memories, laugh, and talk of all the things we have been given.
      What are some things you are thankful for? What are some of your Thanksgiving traditions? Take time this season to dwell on the blessings from God and tell people how much they mean to you.
    
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!
           Love,
                   Jade

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Bucket List

I have heard of people having these but never really thought of doing it myself. But I want to start writing my dreams and wishes down. So here we go:

1. Learn to use a gun
2. Learn archery
3. Go to Missouri
4. Go to Kansas
5. Go to Indiana
6. Drive a Charger
7. Get published
8. Tie my uncle at golf
9. Go on a road trip with my sister
10. Write a devotional foe young girls
11. Go to Kentucky
12. Go to Santa Anita racetrack
13. Go to Churchill Downs
14. Visit Portland Meadows

That's all I have for now :)

What's on your bucket list?

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Oh a Father's Love

I did a post on the women in my life and now it is time for me to do the men. First off my dad.

Fathers and daughters... the relationship is unique and special. God blessed me with a wonderful father. My dad loves with all that he is. He wants what is best for me and he guides me with love. My dad always makes sure to tell us he loves us, gives us hugs, and our own nicknames. Now no father and daughter go without arguments. We would not be human if we did not. But the love a father has for a daughter is greater than any one argument. We love each other despite our mistakes and our flaws. It is a love that is not defined by circumstance or momentary feeling. The father-daughter relationship is built on a love that is as unconditional as a human can have. My dad is big on loving people like Jesus did. He has put that passion inside me as well. We strive to love others and God with all that we are, through the good and the bad, the pretty and the ugly, the easy and the hard. My dad is my world. I love him and he is my source of comfort, security, and affection. God gave him to me and he plays a huge role in my life. A role no other man but he can fill.

The second is Ed. He is a medic and has helped me with my health and also given me encouragement.  He puts a smile on my face and loves me like a daughter.

My prayer is that every girl can have a dad and father figure to help them through the wildness of life. Dads are irreplaceable and every girl needs one.

Monday, September 21, 2015

The Lord has blessed me...

I am truly blessed with such strong women in my life.

God gave me a mother that blows my mind everyday. She is the strongest woman I have ever seen. She has endured so much and I have seen her time and time again get back up and fight again. I have only seen my mom cry a handful of times but she has never let the situation stop her from moving on. She finds hope and strength in God and her faith is inspiring. She never stops loving someone, no matter what they've done. I pray someday I can be just like her. Full of faith. Full of love. And full of hope.

God also gave me a twin sister. She is my world. My inspiration. My joy. Adri is a dedicated athlete and her strength and comittment to whatever sport makes me proud and inspired. She does everything with 110%. When she makes mistakes she'll push harder to do better. Her faith is strong and she shows me how to make a relationship with God more personal. She is kind and loving. When under stress, she might crumble for a moment but she always takes what's in front of her and deals with it. She can put on a smile in the midst of chaos. She stays strong for me, and I am thankful for it. I want to be like her. Strong. Dedicated. And true.

Rain, is my other sister. We aren't blood related but our hearts are connected. She inspires me to take each day with a fresh perspective. Her trials have been similar to mine, and some worse off than mine. She stays strong for me, and pushes herself despite the difficulties some days throw at her. She is cheerful and positive. And I know I can count on her. She gives hope, love, and wisdom to me and I am eternally grateful. I want to be like her. Inspiring. Determind. And honest.

Thank you Jesus for these women and the other women you have put on my life. I pray you give every girl amazing role models as you have given me. Bless each girl and woman in the world today and forever. Amen.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Love

Isn't it weird how you can love someone but still not realize how much you truly do until they are gone?

There are hundreds of types or "levels" of love. There is a love of a brother and sister or a sister and sister; a love only twins can have; a love of a parent and their child or a child to their parent; a love between friends; and a love between a husband and wife.

I know I love my parents. Yes, its hard at times when they seem to ask the impossible, correct me, or embarrass me, but at the end of the day I love them. I love my twin sister. She's everything to me. In some ways this love is greater than my love for my parents. This may sound cliche, but she and I are connected at heart. I will get mad at her, and we have out differences, but at the end of the day I love her more and more.  She has my utmost loyalty. I love my brothers way differently then my sister. It is more of a conditional love, I must say, but I love them because they are family and sometimes they are fun. I love my friends. Some on a different level. Some I bear my heart and soul to. Some I give bits and pieces. But I love them all and they have my time, my support, and my friendship.

I don't want to love one a level and then when that person is gone regret not loving them more. Love is hard, but it is what God commanded us to do. You can do all the great things in the world but if you do not love, it is all wasted. Love. That is the purpose God gave us. To love Him and love others. That's something I strive to do.

I know I love all these people, but I usually don't truly understand the level I love them at until something traumatic happens or they are gone. It is in those moments where I want to spend time with them, talk to them, and love them even more. Take a moment and think of the people you love. Are there ways where you can love them more? I know I don't want to take relationships for granted. I want to love with all that I am. I want to love like Jesus.

What about you?

Friday, August 28, 2015

Oh, that feeling...



It is amazing how one thing can ruin your day. How one little word can make everything you do feel monotonous and hopeless. How it can make an easy assignment feel like the hardest test in the world. How everything gets dis-proportioned with the new lens on. It sends you spiraling down until you feel like there is no further room to go, but then you continue to plummet. In your own mind, you feel the end of time coming. Hopelessness settles in your heart for what you think will be eternity. Or that awful wonder if anything is worth it anymore. The road you are on seems to get windier and the down slope appears to grow steeper until you fear it will simply just drop off. There is that grey cloud hanging over you, getting closer, and stealing your oxygen. The rain is soft and taunting. Thunder syncs to your heartbeat, sending trembles down your being.
Those illusions, those feelings, they have a name. Depression. Some people make it a friend. Some, an enemy. Then there are others who let it decide. They give themselves up to it, allowing their life to be a constant tug o’ war. Sound is a cruel element of the pit. The good always seems so far away, like whispers in the wind, while the bad is a loud shout, striking you deep down. When you call out, no one hears, your voice is nothing but breath leaving your lungs.
Some days you fight, you get bruised and you bleed. Other days, you give up and get dragged down. Make sure you never lose sight of the one true light source in this world. Jesus. He loves you and he will never stop caring about you. God will be your help in the storm. He will hold you when you are hurting. He will heal your wounds. Make sure you hold onto those friends that love you, that will fight for you, that will never give up on you. Keep them close and let them help. Lean on one another, share your feelings, and grow in Christ Jesus together. Don’t think you are alone, because you aren’t. There are many people in the same boat as you are. You don’t need to go through the valley alone. Your Savior is there for you, your friends are there, and there many others who will help.
Whoever you are, whatever you are going through, you can do it. Jesus will be your strength. You are special to him, and many, many others. You are unique, created for a purpose that only you can have. Smile, for you are a beautiful create, made perfectly in the Lord’s image. Pain is not eternal. God’s love is. It shall pass one day, for there is always a rainbow at the end of the storm. I hope you have the courage to fight on, to smile all your days, and to hold on to Jesus. I know it won’t be easy, but you have the King of Kings fighting by your side. Jesus loves you.

With prayers,
Jade Sparks

Friday, August 21, 2015

And the Battle Begins…



Life is a battlefield. You fight or you die. But then again, everyone dies. School is one of the many battles thrusted your way. It is a battle that takes years. Twelve to be exact. Your first few years on this precious earth are preparation for it. You learn fundamentals. Skills and tactics to keep you alive, or at least provide a hope that you will live to see graduation. Each year the battle gets harder. The common soldiers are replaced with lieutenants, then sergeants, then captains, then generals. You start with nothing but you train all day. You sweat and bleed. You get bruised and battered.
But if you are a true fighter, you won’t raise that white flag. You can think about it. You can reach for it. But you’ll never raise it. That’s how I am. I have been the soldier lying in a field, blood dripping from my heart, but I never raised the white flag. I’ve thought about it. I’ve reached for the flag. I have felt the rough pole, the wood against my skin, my fingers curling around it. But I did not lift it. I fought on. I got to my knees. I rose to my feet. I stood tall. Now I fight for the last time. But I do so with a hope to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I fight to survive but that is not the sole purpose of the fight. I have come a long way. I do not enjoy this fight but I have made my peace with it. I will use the tools I have picked up. I shall continue to use the tactics and skills that have been taught, because when this battle ends…
…the next one begins.
Okay, yes dramatics. What can I say? I’m a writer. These essays need a good flare. How else will anyone read them? You cannot just say, “It’s a new year of school. It will be hard. But I want to learn to write.” That’s ridiculous…a disgrace to writing world. And we can’t have that now, can we? So, dear reader, excuse the dramatics, the creative license, and the sarcasm in this essay. This year is the last year of high school. I will strive for excellence in all subjects, including those I do not wish to take. I wish to learn more about writing, the editorial process and publishing. I want to work toward a career as a writer.
And to you, and all that read this essay, I make this promise. I, Jasmine K. Schmidt, will fight the good fight, in life, in school, in faith, and all else that comes my way with honor, dignity, and strength. I shall get back up when I am crushed. I know that storms may come and I know there will be times where I reach for that flag. But I will not, I repeat, will not, surrender. The battle is beginning and I have my armor on and my weapons ready. I shall make it through. I do this not for recognition, nor medals, but for the glory of the Lord. I am his masterpiece, his chosen, his precious daughter.
I take up my role as a daughter, as a writer, and as a student. This coming year will be filled with opportunity, challenges, and wonderful surprises. Throw whatever you want at me…
…I’m ready.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Questions for my readers

How is it when you are younger you have nightmeres and you wake up but when you are older you can have horid dreams and not wake up at all and then they cling to the rest of the day and you don't want to put your head back on the pillow in fear you will have thoes nasty images haunt your dreams? Why is this fear so crippling? What am I missing? The more I try to shove it away the more they become vivid....why is that?

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Random Snip It

My heart felt like it was going to pound out of my chest. Each breath felt like it was sandpaper rubbing back and forth on wood. My hands tingles as if electricity was pulsing through my fingertips up to my chest. Every bone inside me hurt like cold steel in the winter. Tears burned my face as they slid down my cheeks like melted gold down a chute. My stomach wrenched as each breath as if to silence me. I pushed my head back, trying to open up my throat but my heart only beat harder, making my stomach twist so that the breath was locked inside me. My head pounded along with my heart like an executioner's drum. My eyes burned like the hot fire that torched through me, that threatening to eat me. But then the cold wind brushed over me and I'd freeze. Shivers ran down my spine. My knees rocking and there was nothing I can do about it. I tried blankets, warm soups, but the winter kept going inside me. My teeth chattered, making my body shake, and sending another fountain worth of chills. My voice shook as I tried to speak. My heart once again tried to silence me and there I laid, helpless, hurting. I'm sick.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Novel Clip

His hand slowly reached down for his gun. Five fingers gripped the black Glock 32. It felt odd at first- the barrel was sleek and the handle rough. With his other hand he circled the barrel lip, smiling to himself. His hand slowly felt each inch of the gun. Releasing the magazine he reloaded the handgun. The click made his eyes dance. Taking the safety off he looked up, his eyes expertly scanning his surroundings. His mind calculated and his ears picked up every noise. His pointer finger slid down to the cool trigger. An itch to let a bullet fly came over him and he raised the firearm. His eye locked on the target, his lips relaxed from its smile and formed a consentrative line. Steadying his adrenaline filled hand with his other he tensed his trigger finger. In a split second he pulled his finger back,  felt the kick and nodded as the target fell. Looking down at the Glock, he let the smile crawl back on his face. It would be his companion for many years. It would be his savior in the violent times ahead. It would be his temptation in the unknown future before him.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Learning about Jade Sparks



Thanks to my good friend, P.H. Alexandra, who interviewed me. <3

When did you first start writing?
I started writing when I was in Kindergarten, when I was 5. My mom thought it was important for us to write every day, whether it was random thoughts, stories, or poems.

What's your favorite genre to write?
I love writing western and modern adventures, historical fiction, and some futuristic.
 
Would you say there's a theme that reoccurs a lot in your writing?
Yes, there is definitely a lot off adoption and forgiveness in my books. My first three have both elements in them. A lot of my others also deal with strain between parents and the kids. I take a lot from my personal life and put twists in them so that it is realistic.

Which character of yours do you identify most with?
Malcolm, which I find funny because I’m not an orphan… I was adopted, but mine was a good match. We both are loyal, stubborn, hot tempered, passionate, and lost. I put so many of my insecurities in him, and my deepest emotions.

Do you think most of your characters have a trait in common?
Oh definitely. They are all super stubborn.

How many writing projects do you work on at one time?
I try to focus on one but usually it is two. However, the second is usually only worked on when I have writer’s block on the main project.

What helps you write the most?
Word Wars have helped tremendously, soundtracks that are darker and mysterious sounding, and friends I can freak out with about my story.

Do you listen to music while you write?
Oh yes, and I usually write best when it is classical and soundtracks.

Do you like collaborating with writing?
Yes, I have actually completed two collective novels with a good friend of mine.

What do you find most helpful in a critique?
Whether or not the reader likes it and the flow of the story is usually what I tend to look for in critiques.

What do you think is the most important element in a book?
The characters. If the characters are dull, the book is…at least that’s how I feel. I love character development and mannerisms and stuff like that.

Do you have advice that you would give to a new writer?
Don’t quit. Write even when it’s hard. Write anything and everything. And don’t stop.
Do you mind showing people unfinished work?
I don’t mind if they are my close friends and family.

Have there been any books that really inspired you to write?
Oh definitely. Joan Lowery Nixon’s Orphan Train Adventures inspired me to write New York’s Shadow. The Orphan Train Movement has very little information and less books written about it, and seeing she made a series on it, made me want to write a book of my own so that the movement can be better known.

What do you do when you have writers block? 
Watch movies and read books hoping something will spark inspiration. Or I get a friend and write with them.

If you went on a getaway to write somewhere, where would you go?
Somewhere where there are no people, lots of flat land, and you can see blue skies for miles.

Do you prefer picture prompts or sentence prompts for writing? 
Sentences, because they evoke more emotion in me than pictures do.

What's your favorite thing to describe in your writing?
I love describing nature and actions.

Have you ever asked someone if you could base a character off of them?
No. My characters are mostly based off of different ways I see myself or the type of men I wish there were, the type of mentor I wish I had.

Do you have a regular critique group?
No, the only ones that critique my work are family and friends (including the OYAN community)
What's your favorite thing to do after writing?
Read, and then write some more.

What gives you the most new ideas?
Either a really good book or movies with amazing character development and interactions.

What is the most common hobby for your characters to have? 
Horseback riding and getting into trouble.

What is a writing resource that has helped you?
Um, well any book really, including the thesaurus and dictionary. I did a curriculum called IEW that helped a lot and OYAN has given me some new ideas too that have helped some.

Do you prefer keyboard and computer or pencil/pen and paper?
Usually with my novels, I prefer my laptop because my fingers will type faster than my hand can write and then I like pen and paper when I write poetry. I can’t stand the sound of a pencil on paper, for what reason, I do not know…

Have you ever hosted a writing contest?
No, unless the iPod challenges on the OYAN forum count, because I held one of those.

Have you ever been to an OYAN Summer Workshop?
No, I haven’t.

Do you prefer tea or coffee?
Tea, and I prefer it has caffeine in it.

If you could only eat one food while you wrote, what would you choose?
Sandwich or soup, they make me feel like I’m back in time.

Do you have a favorite color of pen?
Black.

Do you like your pencils sharp or dull?
I don’t like pencils at all really, I hate the sound they make on paper.
Do you know of any good writing blogs?
Um, writing blogs…not really.

Do you see writing as a possible future career? 
Yes I do, and I certainly hope and pray it is. But I’m going wherever God guides me.